Roger Deakins On Shooting 'Sicario' & What Cinematography Is Actually About!

By Aditya Savnal. Posted on December 05, 2015

With Sicario, the gritty drama on the politics of the Mexican drug mafia, Denis Villeneuve has once again reiterated his position as one of the most promising filmmakers of recent times.

Much of the films' brilliance is derived from Roger Deakins' stunning camerawork, which complements the tense and claustrophobic atmosphere of the film. In a recent interview with Variety Artisans, Deakins spoke about how he shot the acclaimed film and his equation with Villeneuve.

In Deakins' opinion, cinematography is not about creating or shooting great images, but doing justice to the source material. In the course of the film, if the audience shifts their attention from the story towards the visuals, then that is his failure.

Deakins said that he doesn't read the script with a particular approach in mind. But finalizes the look based on the director's approach and the discussions that ensue with him. It was easier for Deakins to do this while shooting Sicario since he had worked with Villeneuve earlier on Prisoners.

Besides the aerial shots, the film has been noted for its night scenes and the opening scene which must surely rank as one of the best opening scenes in recent times. Talking about it, Deakins said that his experience of shooting documentaries helped him shoot films that are based on real life issues and demand a gritty approach.

With every work of his, Deakins has raised the bar. It isn't surprising that many count him amongst the best cinematographers ever.

Liked reading this? If yes, then also read Roger Deakins on how he began his journey and his advice for aspiring cinematographers


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